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Towards Characterization of Serum Antibodies Derived from Genetic Immunization and that Recognize Membrane Proteins of Therapeutic Interest

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Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4 and DRD2) involved in a wide variety of pathologies such

Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4 and DRD2) involved in a wide variety of pathologies such as allergies, inflammation, asthma, pain along with Parkinson's and schizophrenia respectively, the human cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), the human NaV1.8 voltage-gated sodium ion channel, the human TPC2 two-pore channel, the SARS virus proteins 3a, E and M, the MERS virus protein E and M, and the malarial chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT). Serum antibodies against these proteins were generated by genetic immunization, and both in vitro and in vivo expressed membrane proteins were created to characterize the serum antibodies. Plasmid clones were generated for genetic immunization, in vitro protein expression, and in vivo expression (HEK293T transfection). Serum antibodies were generated by genetic immunization of mice by gene gun. Genetic immunization promotes an immune response that allows for the generation of antibodies in the absence of purified protein. In vitro expression was accomplished through the novel technique: in vitro translation with hydrophobic magnetic beads (IVT-HMB). Transfections were performed using the HEK293T cell line to express the protein in vivo. The generated protein was then used in gel electrophoresis and silver stain and/or Western blot analyses to identify and visualize the proteins. These expressed proteins will allow for forthcoming characterization of the generated antibodies. The resulting antibodies will in turn enable structure determination of these important membrane proteins by co-crystallization.

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2017-05

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Targeting Traumatic Brain Injury: Using Phage Display to Create a Specific Antibody for Neurocan Chondroitin Sulfate Proteoglycan Recognition

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This project aims to address the current protocol regarding the diagnosis and treatment of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in medical industries around the world. Although there are various methods used to qualitatively determine if TBI has occurred to a patient,

This project aims to address the current protocol regarding the diagnosis and treatment of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in medical industries around the world. Although there are various methods used to qualitatively determine if TBI has occurred to a patient, this study attempts to aid in the creation of a system for quantitative measurement of TBI and its relative magnitude. Through a method of artificial evolution/selection called phage display, an antibody that binds highly specifically to a post-TBI upregulated brain chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan called neurocan has been identified. As TG1 Escheria Coli bacteria were infected with KM13 helper phage and M13 filamentous phage in conjunction, monovalent display of antibody fragments (ScFv) was performed. The ScFv bind directly to the neurocan and from screening, phage that produced ScFv's with higher affinity and specificity to neurocan were separated and purified. Future research aims to improve the ScFv characteristics through increased screening toward neurocan. The identification of a highly specific antibody could lead to improved targeting of neurocan post-TBI in-vivo, aiding researchers in quantitatively defining TBI by visualizing its magnitude.

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2015-05

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TB or Not TB: Methodologies and Clinical Validation of Tuberculosis Detection Using Nanoplasmon-Enhanced Scattering and Dark Field Microscopy

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Mycobacterium tuberculosis is the primary bacteria responsible for tuberculosis, one of the most dangerous diseases, and top causes of death worldwide, as identified by the World Health Organization in a 2018 report. Diagnostic tools currently exist for identifying those who

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is the primary bacteria responsible for tuberculosis, one of the most dangerous diseases, and top causes of death worldwide, as identified by the World Health Organization in a 2018 report. Diagnostic tools currently exist for identifying those who carry active or latent versions of the infection including chest radiographs, a Mantoux tuberculin skin test, or an acid-fast bacilli smear of sputum samples. These methods are standard in the medical community of high income countries, but pose challenges for lower-income regions of the world as well as vulnerable populations. The need for a rapid, inexpensive, and non-invasive method of tuberculosis detection is evident by the ten million that contracted and 1.6 million that died from TB in 2017 alone. In our study, we used a previously developed nanoplasmon-enhanced scattering technology combined with dark field microscopy in order to investigate the potential for a blood-based TB detection assay. Twenty-eight capture antibodies were screened using cell culture exosomes and human serum samples to identify candidates for a TB-derived exosome biomarker. Four antibodies demonstrated potential for distinguishing negative controls from positive controls in this study: anti-AG85, anti-AG85B, anti-SodA, anti-Ald. These capture antibodies displayed significant differences (p<0.05) for both cell culture exosomes and human serum samples on more than one occasion. The work is significant in its ability to distinguish potential capture antibody targets, and future experimentation may yield a technology ready for clinical settings to address the gap in current TB detection methods.

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2019-05